President Donald Trump is trying to right wrongs in pardoning and commuting sentences of those unjustly imprisoned, according to former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Newsmax TV.
"This is a president who, when he sees wrong, he tries to right it," Blagojevich, a Democrat, told Wednesday's "The Chris Salcedo Show," one night after having his 14-year prison commuted for time served.
In an exclusive interview, Blagojevich, who was convicted for pay-for-play schemes, ripped U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois Patrick Fitzgerald and former FBI Director James Comey.
"I was sent to prison by those guys Comey, Fitzgerald, the usual crowd, a small clique of these same unelected, unaccountable prosecutors who answer to nobody, and who are now using their unlimited power and turning it into a weapon to criminalize routine practices – not only in politics but in government," Blagojevich told host Chris Salcedo.
"So they were able to do successfully at the Triple-A level, a governor, what they were trying to do at the Major League level to a Republican president."
Prosecutions of elected officials by the unelected are a threat to democracy, Blagojevich added.
"These people – put aside President Trump or me – these people are a threat to a country," he continued in the rebuke of political prosecutions. "They are stealing from the American people the right to choose their own leaders through free and fair elections.
"If they don't like what we're doing, the voters, throw us out of office. Don't trump – no pun intended, I don't mean to be disrespectful and say trump up charges – but don't make up charges and turn things that are legal and routine and criminalize them because you're trying to take on somebody who you can't beat in an election."
Blagojevich, having been exposed to the U.S. criminal justice system, hopes to be a crusader for prison reform.
"I've been watching with disgust over the last three years since President Trump's been president, with what they've been doing to him," he said. "And it's been deja vu all over for me, because I've lived it myself."
Blagojevich charged his prosecutors "moved the legal line" in his case, rebuking the attacks as coming from those who are "political hit men."
"I saw what they did to President Trump, they did that stuff to me," he said. "They call these things fancy names, Russia collusion, but there's nothing to that. They called it 'sale of the Senate seat,' there never was such a thing."
"This is very serious problem," he added. "I think it's a major challenge for all of us as Americans, and I would say to my fellow Democrats, 'put aside the feelings you had that you were so disappointed what happened the last election.'
"This is much larger than Republicans vs. Democrats. This is about our freedom and the right of the American people to choose our own leaders and our system of government being based upon self-governing."
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